October 15th, 2012, posted by Aimee
Recently I was at dinner with one of my good friends who also happens to be the CFO of a fast-growing Silicon Valley startup and a hotshot on the fast track to entrepreneurial superstardom. She’s also fantastically witty, stylish, a social butterfly and the mom to two boys under six … basically the kind of chick who makes the rest of us cringe, check our chipped nails and dotty resume before reaching for a second glass of chardonnay to dull the pain of inadequacy in her shadow.
So imagine my surprise when, in answer to my question about how she manages to “do it all” in terms of career, motherhood and social life, she admitted bluntly, “I don’t. I try to do the best I can at work, but honestly I basically suck at my job sometimes.” She went on to admit she has simply decided that it was better to find a way to live with what in her mind is substandard performance on some aspects of her job than to shortchange other areas of her life.
Given the fact she’s the CEO’s right-hand woman and that her company’s on a meteoric rise in the Valley, “Lisa” is definitely exaggerating a bit in her description of failure at work. But it’s still amazing to me that she truly believes she is performing at what she calls “C minus” level – but has chosen not to lose much sleep about it.
That’s exactly how I have felt for the better part of five years since the T-man was born, when this A+ student realized I could no longer pull the 4.0 at work. Instead, I have slowly settled into a life of what I call, “Embracing Mediocrity” … not just at work, but in other areas of my life as well. A few examples where I’m lucky to score a “C” these days:
o My body – I can’t seem to get the discipline I used to have to track my Weight Watchers points and lose these damn last 10 pounds and feel good about baring my tummy in a bikini anymore.
o Career growth – I’m a VP at work but basically that’s where I stalled out six years ago. I used to think about managing and building practice groups and landing new clients … now I focus just on the results right in front of my nose for the current client I’m serving. If they’re happy, I am happy, end of story.
o Learning to cook – I tried for a while to get some kitchen skills and move past frozen Trader Joe’s options for dinner, but then trying to watch points/calories got in the way. Nothing in the low calorie category tastes edible to my family and it’s too much of a pain to go to all that effort for an entrée I can’t even sample. Pass.
o This blog – I used to post 3-4 times/week, now I’m lucky if I eek out a post every two weeks.
What about you all? Is “good enough” good enough for you these days? What are some of the ways you’ve embraced mediocrity in your life in order to remain sane? Please share.